Weekend's best live bets: String Cheese Incident, Chris Daniels, Mayhem and more

Categories: Concerts

After battling cancer, Chris Daniels is back to good and celebrating Better Days with his friends tomorrow night at Swallow Hill.

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Q&A with Julie Libassi of the Raven & the Writing Desk
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Q&A with Zoe Jakes and David Satori of Beats Antique

Welcome to the weekend! A parade of longtime local favorites dominate the dance card over the next couple of days, starting tonight with the second night of the String Cheese Incident's three-night stand at Red Rocks, the return of the Procussions at Summit Music Hall and culminating with Chris Daniels at Swallow Hill tomorrow night, celebrating the release of his new album, the fittingly titled Better Days. If that wasn't enough, there's a can't miss all local bill tonight at the Oriental featuring the Raven and the Writing Desk, Ian Cooke, Go Star, Hindershot and Bonnie and the Beard and much more Mayhem awaiting you. Page down to get the full rundown on this weekend's best live music bets.



See Also: String Cheese Incident Winter Carnival at 1STBANK reviews

The String Cheese Incident, which formed nearly two decades ago, has taken a few breaks from touring, but over the last few years the Boulder-based newgrass act has shifted back into full gear starting with a trio of dates at 1STBANK Center last year and this three-night run at Red Rocks, which kicked last night and runs through Saturday night. Aside from a number of live discs, the band hadn't released any new material in seven years until earlier this month when the six-piece released the new single, "Can't Wait Another Day," from a forthcoming album which is in the works.


When the Procussions, who formed in Colorado Springs in 1998, moved to Los Angeles nearly a decade ago, the then trio was one of the most promising hip-hop acts to emerge from the Centennial State, certainly the first to earn widespread recognition outside the region. Early exposure on Power 106 and URB magazine bolstered the group, which eventually earned a spot on the revamped Rawkus Records roster. With Rez parting ways with the act and Mr. J Medeiros devoting time to his solo career in recent years, the outfit has kept a low profile. The Pros return home to a different and much more vibrant scene, one that now includes acts like Wheelchair Sportscamp and the ReMINDers, both sharing this bill and pros in their own right.


See Also: Q&A with Julie Libassi of the Raven & the Writing Desk

Julia Libassi and Scott Conroy met while attending Tufts University and played in and around Boston with their band Stop Switch before moving to Denver in the summer of 2009. Upon arriving here, the pair sought out potential bandmates on Craigslist. A terse comment to their post -- essentially proclaiming that hipsters from the East Coast were unwelcome, accompanied by an image of a Colorado license plate reading "No Vacancy" -- might have cowed other people, but the plucky duo ultimately found other bandmates and immersed themselves in the scene. Choosing a name taken from Alice in Wonderland -- The Raven and the Writing Desk -- they wrote dark yet soothing music worthy of the moniker. Tonight at the Oriental, the act shares a must-see all local bill that also features Ian Cooke, Go Star, Hindershot and Bonnie and the Beard.


Too many country-music purists of the past couple decades brag about keeping the true sound of country alive. Oklahoma native Jason Boland, though, just does just that. Armed with a catalogue of gritty, twangy songs, Boland and his Stragglers have spent the last twelve-plus years crisscrossing the country and building up a grassroots following, one that knows and feels authentic Americana when it hears it. The group's Comal County Blue -- and particularly its keening, fiddle-laced single, "Bottle by My Bed" -- is a rich, deep and elemental work that doesn't sound retro as much as it yanks out country's roots and replants them in the modern world.


See Also: Q&A with Zoe Jakes and David Satori of Beats Antique

Beats Antique, a trio made up of producer and show-stealing belly dancer Zoe Jakes and a pair of classically trained multi-instrumentalists, David Satori and Tommy Cappel, has crafted a sound that has roots in dubstep, hip-hop, indie rock and even Middle Eastern music. The act's often primal show includes Jakes and fellow belly dancers wearing animal masks, gyrating and seducing festival crowds across the country. Beats Antique headlines the second day of the Wanderlust festival, where Ziggy Marley, Gramatik and MC Yogi are also slated to perform.

Check out our newly revamped concert calendar for a complete listing of all of tonight's shows. Page down for rundown of tomorrow night's best bets.

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